Bird & Bird bucks trend with bumper pay rises

<a class=Bird & Bird bucks trend with bumper pay rises” />Bird & Bird has announced a 19 per cent jump in its first year trainee solicitor salaries at a time when other firms are looking to freeze pay rates.

A Bird & Bird spokesperson said: “We are proud of our high trainee retention rates and we are confident these market-beating salary increases will help us continue to attract the best talent.”

The firm has also lifted salaries for newly-qualified (NQs) lawyers, raising pay by nine per cent to £60,000 from £55,000. A first year trainee at Bird & Bird will now pocket £37,000 and increase of 19.4 per cent, while second year trainees are on £40,000. These figures are up from £31,000 and £35,000 respectively.

The rises promote the firm to within touching distance of the same pay league as magic circle firms such as Allen & Overy and Linklaters.

The pay rises come in a year of economic uncertainty, which has put a stop to the big salary increases of previous years.

City firm Herbert Smith has frozen trainee pay at last year’s rate of £36,000, while trainees at Linklaters saw their pay rise by 3.6 per cent to £37,400. An NQ at Linklaters will now earn £66,000, which represents a four per cent rise on last year,